BNP wants Tk 87,000cr coronavirus special fund | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 05, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:16 AM, April 05, 2020

BNP wants Tk 87,000cr coronavirus special fund

The BNP yesterday demanded that a special fund of Tk 87,000 crore should be allocated to tackle the impacts of coronavirus on the country's economy.

The party has proposed allocating Tk 61,000 core for "short-term sector", Tk 18,000 crore for "medium-term sector" and Tk 8,000 crore for"unforeseen sector", said Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir, secretary general of the BNP, said.

Addressing a press conference at the party chairperson's Gulshan office, Fakhrul presented a 27-point-package proposal.

"A special fund of Tk 87,000 with the three percent money of the GDP will have to be declared to implement some short-term and long-term initiatives to protect the economic sector," he said.

He also suggested that the government announced a revised financial package after the shutdown so that the economic activities can be restored to where it was before the general holidays.

"The current corona crisis is not only a threat to life but also a disaster for the economy. The common and low-income people are the worst sufferers of it. That's why we propose taking short and long-term steps to overcome it," Fakhrul said.

He called upon the well-off section of society to come forward to stand beside the poor, homeless and destitute with food amid the stalemate in economic activities.

The BNP leader also stressed the need to adopt and implement coordinated plans based on a national consensus to overcome the crisis.

He said a specialised hospital should be established to treat the patients infected with contagious diseases like Ebola, Dengue and corona.

He praised the role of the doctors, nurses, journalists, armed forces, law enforcers and other emergency service providers who are working relentlessly to contain the spread of the virus.

Fakhrul said there has been an allegation that people could not get access to IEDCR by calling their hotline numbers.

"According to newspaper reports, some eight lakh people called the dedicated coronavirus hotline numbers in the last two months. IEDCR alone received more than 70,000 calls, but only 1,100 people were tested until March 28 and 48 were found positive."

He alleged that though the World Health Organisation repeatedly asking for testing more and more people, Bangladesh is still among the countries with the lowest test rate.

"On the other hand, if we look at the fatality rate, we see that our fatality rate is higher than devastated Italy," he said, adding that low test rate is the reason behind such figures.

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